What symptoms might I have before and after menopause?
The hormone changes that happen around menopause affect every woman differently. Also, symptoms sometimes are not caused by menopause but by other aspects of aging instead. Some changes that might start in the years around menopause include: • Irregular periods. Your periods may: o Come more often or less often o Last more days or fewer o Be lighter or heavier • Hot flashes (or flushes). These can cause: o Sudden feelings of heat all over or in
the upper part of your body o Flushing of your face and neck o Red blotches on your chest, back, and arms o Heavy sweating and cold shivering after the flash • Trouble sleeping. You may have: o Trouble sleeping through the night o Night sweats (hot flashes that make
you sweat while you sleep) • Vaginal and urinary problems. Changing hormone levels can lead to: o Drier and thinner vaginal tissue, which
can make sex uncomfortable o More infections in the vagina o More urinary tract infections o Not being able to hold your urine long enough
to get to the bathroom (urinary incontinence) • Mood changes. You might: o Have mood swings (which are not
the same as depression) o Cry more often o Feel crabby • Changing feelings about sex. You might: o Feel less interested in sex o Feel more comfortable with your sexuality • Other changes. Some other possible changes at this time (either from lower levels of hormones or just from getting older) include: o Forgetfulness or trouble focusing o Losing muscle, gaining fat, and having a larger waist o Feeling stiff or achy